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Title: Using an Italian Diachronic Corpus to Investigate the "Core" Patterns of the Language of Science
Authors: Scarpa, Federica
Issue Date: 2004
Publisher: EUT - Edizioni Università di Trieste
Series/Report no.: Rivista internazionale di tecnica della traduzione / International Journal of Translation
The aim of this paper is twofold. First, to help in establishing the true extent of
the influence of scientific English on its Italian counterpart, especially at the
level of the meaning-making practices of the Italian scientific community.
Second, to provide a small contribution to the hypothesis of “core” patterns in
scientific language across different languages following Halliday (1993). To
achieve both aims, the linguistic evolution of a specialist subject field
(medicine) which has been particularly influenced by English has been
monitored over a 60-year time span (1939-2000) by investigating a small
corpus, mainly on the topic of seborrhea and acne, consisting of original texts in
Italian taken from textbooks on dermatology aimed at university students. The
specific patterns of scientific language which are being monitored for
measuring variation over time are mainly by-products of “grammatical
metaphor”, which Halliday and Martin (1993) see as the most characteristic
feature of the written “discourse for doing experimental science”
(nominalization, choices for Theme and New, simple structure of clauses and
sentences, etc.).
Type: Article
Appears in Collections:Rivista internazionale di tecnica della traduzione n.08 - 2004

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